Slumdog Millionaire is a 2008 British drama film that is a loose adaptation of the novel Q & A (2005) by Indian author Vikas Swarup, telling the story of 18-year-old Jamal Malik from the Juhu slums of Mumbai. Starring Dev Patel as Jamal, and filmed in India, the film was directed by Danny Boyle, written by Simon Beaufoy, and produced by Christian Colson, with Loveleen Tandan credited as co-director. As a contestant on Kaun Banega Crorepati, an Indian version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Jamal surprises everyone by being able to answer every question correctly. Accused of cheating, Jamal recounts his life story to the police, illustrating how he is able to answer each question correctly.
After its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival and later screenings at the Toronto International Film Festival and the London Film Festival, Slumdog Millionaire had a nationwide release in the United Kingdom on 09 January 2009, in India on 23 January 2009, and in the United States on 25 December 2008. Regarded as a sleeper hit, Slumdog Millionaire was widely acclaimed, being praised for its plot, soundtrack, cinematography, editing, direction, and performances (especially Patel’s). It was nominated for ten Academy Awards in 2009 and won eight—the most for any 2008 film—including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay. It won seven BAFTA Awards including Best Film, five Critics’ Choice Awards and four Golden Globes.
Eighteen-year-old Jamal Malik, an Indian Muslim from the Juhu slum of Mumbai, is a contestant on Kaun Banega Crorepati, and is one question away from the grand prize. However, before the ₹20 million question, he is detained and tortured by the police, who suspect him of cheating. Through a series of flashbacks, Jamal recounts the incidents in his life that provided him with each answer.
At five years old, Jamal manages to obtain the autograph of Bollywood star Amitabh Bachchan after jumping into a cesspit. Jamal’s older brother Salim later sells the autograph. Their mother dies during the Bombay riots, and as the brothers flee the riot, they meet Latika, a girl from their slum. Salim is reluctant to take her in, but Jamal suggests that she could be their “third musketeer”, a reference to the Alexandre Dumas novel The Three Musketeers. The brothers refer to themselves as Athos and Porthos but do not know the third musketeer’s name.